The Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis (familiarly known as St. Kitts and Nevis) are 2 islands in the Leeward Islands chain about 1,200 miles southeast of Florida. The islands are just 2 miles apart and they straddle the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean. The population is 39,619 and the literacy rate is 97.8%. English is the official language and the language of instruction.
The first settlers of St. Kitts and Nevis can be traced to 100 BC. The English founded the first permanent European settlement on St. Kitts (it was also their first in the Caribbean) in 1623 and the French established a settlement in 1625. It was also the first French colony in the Caribbean. The French and the English joined together and massacred the native Caribs and then divided the island in half. In 1628, the island of Nevis was colonized by British settlers from St. Kitts. St. Kitts passed from the English and French until it became a British colony in 1783. In 1967, St. Kitts, Nevis and Anguilla became an associated state of the British Empire. In 1971, Anguillans voted to separate from the association and, in 1983, St. Kitts and Nevis gained independence from Great Britain, and the country became known as the Federation of Saint Christopher and Nevis. In 1998, residents of Nevis voted on a referendum to separate from the Federation, but it was defeated.
Education on St. Kitts and Nevis is overseen by the country's Ministry of Education is free and compulsory from age 5 to age 16.
Primary and Secondary Education
Primary school is 7 years beginning at age 5. No credential is issued upon completion of primary school. Seven public high schools and several private high schools offer secondary school programs. Secondary school is 5 years and, upon completion, students sit for the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) Secondary Education Certificate. Following secondary school, students have the option of continuing their studies at Clarence Fitzroy Bryant College or completing 2 years of upper secondary school which culminates with sitting for the Caribbean Examinations Council Certificate of Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE).
Clarence Fitzroy Bryant College offers 2-year associate's degree in teacher education, 2-year applied associate's degrees in business, information technology, and other technical/vocational fields, and a 3-year associate's degree in nursing. The College also houses the University of the West Indies Level One program which is a one-year program after which students transfer to another UWI campus to complete a degree program. Admission to the associate's degree programs requires 3-5 passes (depending on the program of study) on the Caribbean Examinations College (CXC) Secondary Education Certificate. The UWI Level One program requires 5 passes on the Caribbean Examinations College (CXC) Secondary Education Certificate and at least 2 passes on the Caribbean Examinations Council Certificate of Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE).
There are 8 other colleges and universities recognized by the Accreditation Board of the Ministry of Education that offer an American-style education in nursing, medicine, veterinary medicine, and other health sciences.